.:: The Voice, X-Factor, American Idol…And Which One Rules Them All ::.

May 10, 2012

I originally posted this article back on March 25.  At that time I was entranced with the glitzy chairs and  star-power of America’s latest singing competition: The Voice.  I was amazed by the talent and the camaraderie between the judges Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green, Blake Shelton, and Adam Levine.  The Voice was fresh and relevant in a way that American Idol and X-Factor US wasn’t.  Unfortunately, the show had its serious ups-and-downs.  Now that The Voice has drawn to a close, I’ve taken a more jaded opinion of it.  I still love it, but I admit it has flaws (as many as American Idol and X-Factor, just in different ways).

So I’ve decided to re-edit this post to reflect a more objective viewpoint.  Plus, as I stated in the previous version of this post. the American Idol vs. The Voice debate is STILL getting on my nerves.  Maybe I’m getting old and stodgy but I seriously think America is tone-deaf.

I’ve been out of this singing reality loop for a while now. I think I only watched the first two and a half seasons of American Idol before I lost interest (I think around the time of that whole Hawaii Jasmine Tiras debacle… and after the disappointment of Clay Aiken’s debut album). But now I was willing to give that reality singing thing one more go. I got back just in time to watch X-Factor’s inaugural season, the Voice’s second season, and aged and doddering Idol’s 11th season. My verdict? No singing show is (in the words of the singer Pink) “Perfect.”  That being said, I’m still most definitely a “Voice” fan. X-factor is old news but now the Net is abuzz with The Voice and American Idol going head-to-head. If Season 3 of Idol lost me, Season 11 isn’t doing any better. I swear I think I’m just watching it to justify my reasoning of why The Voice is just so much better.

Plus it makes for a good blog article. So let’s get to it! Here’s the pros, cons, and myths surrounding America’s three biggest singing shows. (Come back in a few months to see what I think of America’s FOURTH singing competition…. “DUETS!” *rolls eyes*)

The History of Modern Reality Singing Contests

Okay first we need to delineate the chronology of these three shows.

1999 – PopStar debuts for the first time in New Zealand and becomes the Mother of all Reality Singing shows

2001 Spring – PopStars goes to the UK and US but doesn’t last long
2001 Oct – Pop Idol (based on PopStars) debuts in the UK (again doesn’t last long)

2002 Jun – American Idol (Pop Idol’s US cohort) makes its fateful debut to wild success

2004 Sep – X-Factor UK replaces Pop Idol and debuts to wide acclaim

2010 Sep – The Voice of Holland debuts for the first time

2011 Apr – The Voice (based on The Voice of Holland) debuts in the US
2011 Sep – Simon Cowell brings his X-Factor to the US

2012 – The Voice UK debuts to critical acclaim (Simon must be sweating now…or not)


Why The Voice “Almost” Rules Over American Idol and X-Factor

All reality singing competitions share the same elements: auditions to find the diamonds in the rough, judges to critique and/or coach the talent, contestant back-stories the public can relate to, a way to whittle the hundreds of contestants to the chosen ones who get to sing for America’s votes, and drama to attract viewers. Not all shows are created equal, and some do them better than others. So to see how The Voice fares against either American Idol or X-Factor, let’s compare each aspect against each other.

1. JUDGES/Mentors

IDOL: The only remaining original judge on Idol is Randy Jackson; Steven Tyler (of Aerosmith) and Jennifer Lopez are relative newcomers. Occasionally they’ll have Jimmy Iovine (producer at Universal Records) playing the unofficial fourth judge. I feel all four of them fail as judges and fail even more as mentors. After 11 years, Randy’s still giving discombobulating advice, JLo can’t say anything but “I love you” and you could seriously make a drinking game out of how many times Steven says “Beautiful.” The recent “one-upping” comment game where each judge says something more ridiculous than the last (“You’re the best singer in this competition” to “You’re the best singer in America in all 11 seasons of American Idol” to “You’re the best singer in American EVER!”  The kicker was JLo’s comment of “You’re the best singer in the last 50 years!” Note: JLo is 43) has become sickening. Jimmy works with each contestant personally and sometimes they still fail on stage.  Of course you can’t really blame that on Jimmy but from the metro reels I see, he takes a pretty hand-off approach (literally).  He and the week’s guest judge (also useless except for maybe Stevie Nicks who seemed to ACTUALLY be working with the contestants… I mean half the time the guest judges don’t even say anything.) sit in chairs on one side of the room and watch the contestant on the other side of the room sing. Erika (and later Elise), one of Idol’s earliest casualties said it best in an article “American Idol Castoff Confused by Judges’ Advice“, “I felt there was a lot of contradiction, and as an artist and someone who takes their singing very seriously, it’s hard for me to take critique of my work, period, and then when you feel like you sorta have people telling you one thing and then telling you something completely different the week after, it’s hard.”  Judge Favoritism is also EXTREMELY noticeable.  We’re talking serious one-upping into the stratosphere on those they like (note: Jessica and Joshua, and dumping of trash on those they don’t (note: Hollie).

X-FACTOR: X-Factor had one good thing going for it: Simon Cowell and his infamous hardball critiques. The inclusion of Paula was supposed to bring in the feel-good days of old Idol. Fleshing out the rest of the team were L.A. Reid (a producer that might remind the average viewer of Randy) and the last minute fill in Nicole Scherzinger (formally of the Pussy Cat Dolls). While the cast made X-Factor feel just a BIT too close to Idol, at least they did do a pretty decent job of being mentors. They had a hand in everything from song choice, song arrangement, practice, fashion, stage set-up , and even the background dancers. Whereas Jimmy sat in a chair and watched, the four judges actually got “down and dirty” with their contestants working on arrangements or placing.  Sometimes it was brilliant (note: Melanie Amaro singing Whintey Houston’s “When You Believe”) sometimes it was a “what the hell were you thinking” moment (note: Drew singing the Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean” sitting in a chair or Stacie Francis singing in a cage).  I won’t’ say they did everything right but they did stand by their contestant and certainly put on an interesting show, albeit one that I thought was a bit over the top (Did we really need the slutty girls dancing around Marcus Canty… X-Factor’s version of gospel singer Joshua Ledet?) As for critiques…. most of the time I though Nicole was spewing sugar-coated garbage.  Paula was sometimes on point (she’s an AI veteran after all), but at leas Simon and L.A. Reid kept it real (No Randy, contrary to what you may believe you are NOT keeping it real). (Post Season 1: say goodbye to Paula and Nicole and hello to Britney Spears?! I don’t know about this one…)

VOICE: The Voice has Blake Shelton, Christina Agueliera, Cee Lo Green, and Adam Levine of Maroon 5. All four of these artists have won Grammy’s. Cee Lo actually won one in the most recent awards show. Not only are they big names, they’re relevant artists to NOW. They’re younger, hipper, and are “theoretically” more qualified to give singing advice. Plus they cover the four main genres that govern mainstream music: Country Blake, Pop Diva Christina, R&B Soul Cee Lo, and Rockin Adam. Like X-Factor these judges groom their contestants for everything, and judging by the pre-singing practice segments, they seem to give real meaningful advice and help them work through their songs. They also SING with their chosen contestants during the finale! (Let’s see any of the other judges from the other two shows do that!)  I thought it was sweet that Christina agreed to singing “The Prayer” with her finalist Chris Mann (he’s said repeatedly that it was his main goal for being on the show) or that Blake told his finalist Jermaine Paul  to “teach me that R&B thing.” Sometimes (particularly in the Battle Rounds) they made some terrible song choices (Like X-Factor, the coaches- or cadges as one Blog puts it- pick all the songs the contestants sing.) But I will say that at least they chose popular songs that most of the populace know (can’t say the same about American Idol 11….). Staging was a toss-up for me.  Blake and Adam generally stuck with the simple singer/dim lighting/few back-up singers formula (“Captain America” swinging above Mathai notwithstanding).  Cee Lo and Christina went for staging in excess… X-factor style (we really didn’t need the weird guys on stilts for Jamar or the creepy masks for Lindsey’s performance did we?).  As for critiques……  The Voice was advertised as “We’re not going to put down aspiring artists.” For the most part there was a lot of “I loved it, you sang with soul, yadda yadda…” going on but there were moments where the judges forgot that MO (mostly Christina’s repeated call-outs to Tony Lucca).  Blake never really managed to say many sensical things (then again he’s billed as a guy with a witty mouth who’s always drunk so we can forgive him), Cee Lo’s a loving teddy bear, and Adam doesn’t know what talking a straight line is (this guy must wander aimlessly in parking lots too). (I do applaud Adam for the best line though, “I hate to use that word ‘pitchy,’ it’s so stupid. We’re all pitchy. I’m pitchy all the time. It sucks.” THANK YOU ADAM!! I hate that word too!)


IDOL: Was Idol always like this? Hollywood week was an affront to humanity. What show would focus an entire episode not on any singing but of bickering between contestants, puking because everyone caught the flu and stayed up till 5am in the morning practicing, and use a girl fainting on stage as a cliffhanger? Everyone knows about “Cowboy Jerk” but I doubt he was as bad as they’re making him out to be (the power of scene selection). Then there was the whole debacle with Jermaine. First they bring the guy back as a wildcard and then they disqualify him because he didn’t disclose his misdemeanor arrest warrants. Then they proceed to interview him on public television. Really Idol? That’s so low. Perhaps that’s why they’re hanging on to Hee Jun so much. That guy’s the best thing to happen to Idol in years (and not necessarily in a good way).  Going fast forward, I guess AI felt they needed more ratings.  I am 100% convinced they manufactured the great “Jessica save,” where clear front-runner Jessica Sanchez mysteriously got the lowest number of votes and had to be “saved” by the judges.  Ryan Seacrest’s quadruple result fake-outs also pisses me off.

X-FACTOR: X-Factor followed the formula that Simon had used in the UK. Engineer drama between the judges. Have them bicker, name-call, and all around be nasty to each other. Again this plan backfired. Mostly because America isn’t that stupid and we know when you’re forcing drama just for the hell of it. (There was also the attitude problems of Astro but that wasn’t forced drama, that was just Astro being a punk… they made him apologize for it in the following episode.)  Another bit of probably staged drama dealt with Melanie Amaro.  Simon cut her during the “boot camp at the judges’ house” stage.  He then made a dramatic play of “Oh my god I made a huge mistake,” and personally went to her home in Florida to invite her back.  She ended up winning the giant 5 million dollar jackpot.

VOICE: Initially, the majority of “drama” was focused on the playful banter between the judges. Sure they’re wise-cracking and putting each other down, but they’re doing it in the way a close group of friends would make fun of each other. Rather than being painful, it’s really fun to watch.  Some of the best moments of the show came from the Blind Auditions and Battle Rounds. (I loved when Christina called Adam a “Justin Timberlake wannabe,” or when Blake said to a contestant, “I’m glad you wore that [get-up] because I’m a married man and that’s all I got left.”) The fact that the judges have to persuade a contestant to come to their team rather than someone else’s makes for even more hilarious comments. Another golden moment for me was during the battle rounds, when Christina had her two contestants sing a song from Nirvana. Blake’s response was a confused, “I never heard that song before.” Followed by Cee Lo saying, “You really need to get out of Oklahoma more,” and Adam face planting and going, “Who ARE you?!” I admit half the time I want to watch just to see what the judges are going to say. Some people cite that as a detriment to the show (that it’s about the judges and not the contestants) but really, who cares? It’s bloody hilarious!  However, this playful atmosphere quickly degenerated to real drama…. drama between Christina and her former mouseketer and contestant Tony Lucca from Team Adam.  First it started as a casual comment, “I don’t think you’re the best singer … you’re a little one-dimensional.” Then it became a “get back at Christina moment by singing Britney’s ‘Hit Me Baby One More Time'” which prompted Christina’s comment of “Well if this doesn’t work out then you and Adam can do a Britney cover band.” This then became another “get back at Christina by signing Jay-Z’s raunchy ’99 Problems and a B!itch ain’t one'” which prompted another Christina comment of “it was a little derogatory toward women. And you shouldn’t have sung that in front of your wife and daughter.” Eventually ending with Adam so perturbed with Christina that (I’m convinced) the planned four judges Finale song was cut and Adam boycotted the after party.  Class act guys and gals. Was this manufactured? I think Christina cutting clear front-runner Jesse Campbell from her team was manufactured for ratings.  This Tony Lucca thing though? Possibly, seeing as Christina was originally all compliments and “I have to back my fellow mouseketer.”  I guess we’ll never know.  I AM really sad that this drama has overshadowed Jermaine’s win.  Booo~


IDOL: Idol’s claim to fame is the idea that the next superstar can be found in the backyard alley.  That means ANYONE can audition.  I’ll admit it. The first time we were introduced to William Hung it was hysterical. The second or third wasn’t so bad either. But after 11 times we’ve had enough. Enough with showing the poor deluded fools who couldn’t’ sing their way out of a paper bag but think they’re the next super star. We’re much more interested in the real talent.  By the same token, we find that actually not EVERYONE can audition.  Idol has an age limit, 28 to be exact.  A pretty crappy limit considering 28+ year olds are the ones more likely to have mature and polished voices. It also forbids anyone that has had a recording contract from joining. Presumably this is to make everything more fair and so give the impression (as someone from some article put it) “that they were discovered after falling off a turnip truck.” I’d like to debunk that myth here. Yes none of the Idol contestants has had a recording contract. That doesn’t mean they aren’t experienced and capable of getting one on their own. Let’s go with two of Idol’s most famous alumni: Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood. I bet you didn’t know that prior to Idol KELLY WAS OFFERED A RECORDING CONTRACT. She turned it down because she felt it would limit her creative freedom. In the end, the added exposure of Idol was much better for her career. Carrie Underwood was also offered a recording contract prior to Idol (though hers was lost due to change in management).  All of Idol’s top 10 with the exception of Hee Jun has had experience singing on stages and in front of crowds.  Jessica Sanchez was even on America’s Got Talent when she was 8. As for the Auditions themselves, the contestants sing acapella in front of the judges in a small cramped room.  Sometimes they get a second song.  Not particularly exciting but it’s a tried and true formula.

X-FACTOR: X-Factor had its fair share of these deluded contestants too. One was so bad Paula ran to the bathroom and didn’t want to come back. The show went a step further though and actually BROUGHT BACK all the deluded fools to a live show to sing an exhibition song. The first time might have been genuine, but the second time it was obviously contrived (one guy even reenacted his falling off the stage stint). Yeah we don’t need that either. Fortunately, X-Factor’s restrictions are a lot more forgiving.  It has a lower age limit of 12 and an upper limit of … nothing. I also think the “contract? no contract?” deal might have been lax (read Leroy Bell and Stacey Francis).  X-Factor also allowed groups, which I think was the biggest advantage of the show. They were divided into four categories: Girls, Guys, Groups, and Peeps over 30. This let people like Leory Bell, a 59 year old who has written two charting singles of Elton John, and America’s little Sunshine, 13-year old Rachel Crowe to join. We got a lot more diversity and therefore the show was more interesting.  Of course we also got 16-year-old brats like Astro but … well you can’t win them all!  X-Factor’s auditions were also acapella but at least it was on a stage in front of a live audience (America’s Got Talent style).  A little more lively and a better taste to how contestants fare under pressure.

VOICE: The biggest draw of the voice are the vaunted Blind Auditions.  None of the judges can see the contestant and must judge them purely on their voice (this means no stupid people dressing weird just to catch attention, like the girl who wore a bikini top to her audition). We also have NONE of those deluded contestants. All the contestants have been pre-selected and at the top of their game. Sure most of them may have a recording contract or sang on another talent show (like Idol), but it doesn’t mean they don’t deserve a second chance (like Tony Lucca, Christina’s fellow Mouseketer, or Juliett Sims, the lead singer for the rock band Automatic Loveletter who just can’t seem to catch a break). Anyway this means every performance is amazing. Even some of those rejected on the Voice are good enough to win Idol.  Oh yes. And the contestants are backed by a full band in front of a live audience.  As for the restrictions, I don’t know if there are any limitations. Definitely no upper age limit as they showed a 64-year old auditioning. The Voice also allows duets which is I think is cool though works a bit oddly with the Battle Round set-up.


IDOL: Ugh. Hollywood Week. After surviving a capella auditions we have to deal with the “mostly” terrible group performances in Hollywood week. Then more a cappella. Then slightly less terrible group performances during Vegas week. Then an instrumental solo on a pretty stage with no audience (what a shame! They had Cirque’s O Theatre and everything!) and THEN they move on to the live shows. It was soooo long and boring. This year was especially bad with all the drama of contestants getting the flu, forcing them into different groups after they’ve made their own groups, and contestants fainting left and right and being taken to the hospital for lack of sleep and dehydration.  Ugh. Just. Ugh.

X-FACTOR: After the auditions, the contestants have to survive one a cappella group performance (Idol style). Thankfully once that is done, the top chosen contestants are segregated into categories (some of the rejected solo contestants are formed into groups… most of which did better than the REAL groups), each judge/mentor gets assigned one category and gets to mentor and weed out the contestants further. They’re all taken to the judges LAVISH houses and asked to perform . Each judge picks their top four favorites (with the help of a guest judge). Back on the X-Factor stage, they get to perform one last time (to music this time) and each judge chooses the top 3 of each category that will move on to the live shows.  This format is slightly more interesting than Idol but drew the criticism that the focus was too much on the judges’ lavish abodes (Simon’s group of girls got to go to his home in …. FRANCE?!)

VOICE: Once each Judge has chosen his/her team from the Blind Auditions, they then pit each of their teammates in the Battle Rounds.  The judges pick two people from their team to sing a duet and, as Adam put it, “sing in harmony while secretly trying to destroy each other.” There’s been a couple of bad match-ups (Erin and the Shields Brothers in “What’s Love got to do with it”) and questionable song choices (Christina choosing “Heart-shaped Box” by Nirvana for Lindsey and Lee) but overall I think the battle rounds have been AMAZING. Seriously. Wow. They even sing in a neon-lit boxing ring and are literally singing to try to destroy each other.


IDOL: The live shows aren’t any more exciting. I always felt Theme weeks were terrible, terrible ideas. How do you expect a Rocker to sing a Stevie Wonder song well, then have the judges say “That wasn’t’ the right song for you?” Plus, since the age limit on Idol tends toward the younger side, you get 16 year olds trying to sing classic Billy Joel songs they have never heard before. (The “Song from their Birth-year” theme made me feel so old. Hollie was born the year Celine released, “The Power of Love?!” I want to cry…)

X-FACTOR: Of course, we have theme weeks, and I didn’t agree with these either, but for different reasons. I mostly hated these theme weeks because the judges interpreted them so arbitrarily. L.A. let Astro continue to rap because “he was singing a rock song.” Simon turned a Michael Jackson classic into a sleep-fest just to fit Drew’s voice. On the other hand, I did like the “Pepsi Challenge” week where viewers got to choose what each contestant should sing.

VOICE: After this we go to the live shows until there’s only one left on each team. Then the finalists get to perform THEIR OWN ORIGINAL SINGLE and sing a duet with their judge/coach. I was curious to see how this worked so I looked up the final episode of season 1. My jaw dropped. I think it’s awesome that each of the four finalists get their own original single. They truly all get something from this show even if they don’t end up winning… a song that’s ready to sit on top of the charts. Idol did this a few times in the past. I think they need to do that again.


IDOL: Idol makes this claim but I disagree. It’s not just about the contestants. It’s about drama, either between the contestants or the judges. Aside from Jessica and Phillip, you hear more about the pouty face Elise made or Hee Jun’s childish behavior than about their singing. Ryan Seacrest is also a master at leading people on. (Using the same, “I’m sorry Colton but you’re …. totally not going home!” not once but THREE TIMES? Really Ryan?) Idol has its fair share of contestant backstories, which seem pretty ordinary, but has more about how the contestants cope with song practice(or lack thereof) or what they make of Tommy Hillfiger’s style advice. As for the music? I’m sorry Idol to me is just glorified karaoke.

X-FACTOR: Setting aside the judges fake bickering, we can say it’s about the contestants and the music. The backstories certainly seem more interesting and while it might get a little old at least it does give us empathy toward the contestants (this definitely helped Chris Rene, the guy who decided to be clean and sober after years of being a drug addict). I’d also praise the music but a lot of it got lost in the glitzy over-the-top stage sets, dancing, and pyrotechnics. When done right though (Melanie Amaro’s Whitney “When you Believe” cover) it was really amazing. I will also say that the song arrangements did suit the voices of each of the contestants (something I can’t really say of Idol.)

VOICE: Critics claim it’s all about the superstar judges. No. It’s really not. It’s truly about the music. The Voice touts that you can download all the music on the show on their website. And yes, you CAN download every song sung on the show from iTunes in its STUDIO version. EVEN THE AUDITION SONGS! You can download it as soon as the show is over. I think this is pure GENIUS! I’m sure a lot of people would buy a Johnny Keyser audition song set to music (judging by all the comments I’m reading). And after Jessica’s performance, I’d bet half of America would love to buy her rendition of “I Will Always Love You.” So the Voice gives its contestants exposure (winning your votes), and makes money at the same time! (I’m not harboring any delusions that the money is actually going to the contestants, it’s most definitely going to line NBC’s pockets but hey… I think it’s still an awesome idea!)


IDOL: Starting from the live top 12 shows, America can vote. They can vote as many times as they want (causing voting debacles like Jasmine Tiras). Halfway through Idol’s run they instigated the coveted “Judges Save” where the Judges can save one contestant per season if they feel they’ve been erroneously voted off. This still leads most to think that “America got it wrong” and gets it wrong most of the time because it’s about popularity and appeal rather than music.

X-FACTOR: Starting from the top 12 America can vote, as many times as they want, just like Idol. The difference is when it gets down to the bottom two, the judges decide who goes home (until the semi-finals) based on their final “Sing for their life.” If the judges are tied it goes to “dead-lock” and the contestant with the lowest number of votes goes home. The system seems okay except that the judge ALWAYS went with his guy/gal (as I said before), which made that judge’s vote useless because you knew who they were going to vote for. They should just make the contestant’s mentor ineligible to vote. So the remaining two judges would have to have a unanimous decision or let America decide.

VOICE: The public can vote starting from top 24, eliminating one person on each team each night. The votes are half the public and half the judges score, more like how “Dancing with the Stars,” works. I think this set-up is a lot better. Good talent isn’t going to get voted off quickly just because the public doesn’t like them. On the other hand, I hope we’re not subjected to Cee Lo’s weird taste in Erin Martin for too much longer….


IDOL: I hate this argument. Yes Idol has a great track record of producing stars. Yes they have Kelly Clarkson (season 1), and Carrie Underwood (season 4). Yes you have Jennifer Hudson and Katherine McPhee who are both more actresses than singers. It’s easy to have star alumni, WHEN YOU’VE BEEN RUNNING FOR 11 YEARS. Aside from those two …. it’s hard for me to name another superstar winner. You’re talking about a drought of 6 years. Supposedly last year’s winner Scotty McCreery has gone platinum, but seeing as he’s a country singer (a genre I genuinely care little about), eh. Apparent’y last year’s runner-up was a country singer too. I guess the biggest demographic of voters comes from the south. I was not impressed with her performance on the result show that nigh, nor with any of the other Idol alumni they’ve had sing on the results show. Lana Del Ray’s performance was the most boring thing I have ever seen/heard.

X-FACTOR: Again not a fair comparison. Melanie Amarot, X-Factor’s inaugural winner, was amazing but Simon has (erroneously I think) decided not to release her debut album until winter of 2012, a full year after she was crowned (without even a single). I think that’s a big mistake. People are going to forget about her (fans included) and she’ll lose all the popularity and momentum she had from winning the show. (I really wish Melanie hadn’t been forgotten, because I think she sings Whitney FAR BETTER than Jessica Sanchez. Jessica’s been hyped so much it’s like she’s the second coming.) We’ll see how she pulls this off. I’m actually quite looking forward to her album. Chris Rene has also been working hard on his new debut album.

VOICE: The Voice had one season and its winner, Javier Colon, is not only NOT a household name, he’s been struggling to promote his new album. I think that’s a crying shame. His winning single, “Stitch-by Stich” was really good and I really like his voice (though his album isn’t really that great, mostly the fault of his producer and arranger… all the music sounds the same). I think his unsuccess comes from The Voice not being that popular last year (hence not many people know about it). This season looks like it’s going to be a bit different though. Thanks to its premier after the Super Bowl, there’s a lot more people taking notice of The Voice. Here’s hoping! So far the line-up of potential stars is pretty deep indeed.


And the Verdict is…

None of them. But maybe The Voice just barely edges out X-Factor (purely because the Coages are stronger), while American Idol comes in dead last.  I don’t care if AI has twice the number of viewers (tradition.. “We’ve ALWAYS watched American Idol! It’s family time!”) or if The Voice “doesn’t produce stars.”  The Voice has much more entertainment value, which really is the most important thing for a reality show.  Let’s not delude ourselves America. You got lucky with Kelly and Carrie.  Lightning won’t strike a third time.

Now if we could just iron out the kinks in The Voice…. that would be the ultimate singing competition. (Don’t get me started on “Duets.” I think the concept of that show is terrible, but given their star-studded cast it might turn out better than expected. Maybe. Don’t hold your breath…)

Speaking of the X-Factor vs The Voice… the battle is already waging in the UK. The Voice just premiered in the there on March 24.  Simon Cowell (who’s X-Factor has been sitting on top of Britain for the past 7 years) might be worried (Read: “The X Factor versus The Voice: Why Simon Cowell should be very worried) until the glitz dies down that is.


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